NEWS

Britain First's London Mayoral Election Campaign Is Broke

It's tough in the real world.

14/04/2016 08:55

In the digital realm of Facebook, Britain First has 1.3 million likes and a weekly reach many times bigger.

In the real world, the group struggles to muster 30 supporters at marches and their annual conferences can be comfortably accommodated in the front room of a pub.

This lack of actual support now appears to be manifesting itself in a severe lack of funding for Leader Paul Golding's run for Mayor of London.

Barcroft Media via Getty Images
Facebook likes are not translating into real-world support

 In a newsletter to the group's supporters on Wednesday evening, he wrote:

This email is described as an "emergency message" because that is exactly what it is.

Our London election campaign is dangerously close to being a humiliation.

Going at this rate, we will be massively short of hitting all our targets and only reaching a fraction of our target voters.

This election is a mighty opportunity to make a serious breakthrough but it is slipping from our grasp very quickly.

Unless we up our game, dig deep and re-double our efforts, our campaign will falter and we will be a laughing stock.

This would be a disaster as we have already spent £25,000 to get us this far.

According to the begging letter, the group has only raised £6,860 of the £20,000 they were hoping to raise.

It then suggests you "chip in" £10.

The plea was accompanied by a picture of Golding stood next to a tribute of Lee Rigby, despite the murdered soldier's family having previously asked right wing groups not to exploit his memory. 

It continues:

Not a day goes by without fresh revelations about Sadiq Khan and his links to Islamic extremism.

Judging by the opinion polls and news reports, this Mohammad worshipper, who addresses London voters in Arabic, is on course to become the mayor of our capital city.

What an insult, what a stab in the back, to our war heroes and everything they fought and died for.

Churchill, the man who compared Islam in a man to rabies in a dog, will be turning in his grave.

This is a betrayal of our ancestors and our immortal war dead.

The only way we can fight back is by leaping into action and getting behind our London campaign.

If we all club together, we can hit our targets and saturate London with the Britain First message.

Golding's Mayoral election has already hit a couple of snags, namely the fact he appears to not even know what a mayor does.

Britain First

Here are 13 things wrong with it.

1) Golding thinks the Mayor of London has the power to withdraw the UK from the EU.

Facepalm
 

Sure, he can vote in the referendum on 23 June, but his vote will certainly not be the deciding factor. 

As a result, pledging to “Get Britain out of the EU superstate” is at best endearingly misguided and at worst, betraying an absolute fundamental misunderstanding of politics.

And there’s a lot of politics involved in being Mayor.

2) They want to promote Christianity despite not being very Christian.

.

Behind all the antagonistic cross-waving and claims of protecting “traditional British values”, lies a group who are about as un-Christian as you can be.

Proof of this came in January when every single major Christian denomination in the UK denounced Britain First. 

Representatives of 14 churches and Christian groups variously described the political party as “extremist”, “self-serving” and “blasphemous” and condemned its actions as “hi-jacking the name of Jesus Christ to justify hatred and spread fear”.

3) They appear think the Mayor has a direct say in setting immigration policy.

 
Facepalm
 

Dover is not part of London. Or any other border point of the UK. And even if it was, the Mayor of London would still not have a say in national immigration policy.

That would be the jurisdiction of the Home Office.

4) Golding says he is not like other politicians because he “grew up on a council estate”.

CHRIS ISON/PA ARCHIVE
Sadiq Khan

Only, so did Sadiq Khan.

Britain First aren’t big fans of Khan, here’s how they typically describe him.

 
 

5) What exactly is a “real” Londoner?

GETTY IMAGES

Answers on a postcard please (no foreign ones from abroad though).

6) Golding claims BF have made “the streets of our city a safer place” even though he’s on bail after antagonising whole sections of London.

 
 

Remember this? How about this...

 

 
 

7) They’re STILL exploiting the memory of Lee Rigby despite the late soldier’s family asking them not to.

STEFAN ROUSSEAU/PA ARCHIVE

In April of 2014, the Electoral Commission was forced to apologise to Rigby’s family after they allowed Britain First to use the phrase ‘Remember Lee Rigby’ in leaflets to promote candidates in the European Elections.

In June of 2015 family members including his mother Lyn, stepfather Ian, wife Rebecca and son Jack, released a statement reiterating they did not want far-right groups exploiting his memory.

Despite this the group callously continues to regularly post his picture on Facebook and have used his name again in the London Mayoral election brochure.

Now let’s flip it round and look at what isn’t in Paul Golding’s plan.

While the shouty rhetoric around Muslims may well solve... well nothing, there are a number of genuine problems facing the nation’s capital.

8) The Environment. 

LEFTERIS PITARAKIS/AP
Parliament shrouded in smog in central London 

In the last 11 years, 57 people have been killed in London by Islamic extremists.

Rather more worrying is the fact up to 9,000 people die each year from pollution.

Levels are so bad in some areas of the capital that EU annual pollution limits are breached in just one week.

9) Transport.

SANG TAN/AP

No matter who you are, where you live in London, your political affiliation or anything else for that matter, one thing that affects us all is simply getting around the city.

We’ve all experienced the frustration of delays and cramped buses and tube trains and without serious investment and a brilliant plan this will only get worse.

London is already the worst city in Europe for traffic congestion.

So it seems a little odd not to address the issue as part of a London Mayoral manifesto.

Not even whether or not you’d raise the congestion charge...

10) The housing crisis.

BLOOMBERG VIA GETTY IMAGES

London’s house prices are now so inflated it is cheaper to buy a luxury private island in the Caribbean than a bedsit in East London.

More than half of Londoners - 56% - ranked housing in their top two or three challenges.

Sadiq Khan has proposed a ‘London Living Rent’.

11) Policing.

JOHN STILLWELL/PA WIRE

Keeping London safe is not only a huge concern for all but also a massive undertaking.

The London Assembly’s Police and Crime Committee highlighted the 24-hour tube as an impending issue for whoever becomes the next Mayor.

Golding doesn’t appear to have any plans for this unless he is wishing to dramatically expand the scope of his ‘Christian Patrols’.

12) Education - or anything else to do with children or young people.

TIM IRELAND/AP

A recent report found teenagers taking A-levels at inner London schools are outperformed by students elsewhere in England.

Add to this the pressure on parents of finding school places and the fact children are, well, our future and all that, and education is and always has been one of the most fundamental parts of society, not just in London but everywhere.

How many words are dedicated to this issue in Golding’s manifesto? 

Zero.

13) Business.

ANTHONY DEVLIN/PA WIRE

Business and finance is a pretty integral part of London - in fact it’s the “financial centre of the world“.

The Mayor is responsible for “promoting economic development and wealth creation” so a little bit of experience in such matters would go a long way.

Paul Golding has none.

 

 

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